Alcohol goes with it almost as well as candy, & there’s plenty of easy ways to elevate your All Saint’s Eve sipping: The White Lady, a bright & tart, yet silky smooth mixture of Gin, Lemon, Dry Triple Sec, & Egg White, inspired by the ghostly figures of European folklore. There’s the Corpse Reviver #2, a bracing sipper of Gin, Lemon, Maraschino Liqueur & a White Wine Bitter Aperitif like Cocchi Americano, accented by a dash of Absinthe. Perhaps the best approach is the Zombie: a truly classic tiki drink: not only because it’s a masterwork in both balance & taste, but because it has a truly brain-splitting mixture of rums, equivalent to almost five ounces. A deft balancing act of Cinnamon & Grapefruit, Lime & Grenadine, dashes of Absinthe & Bitters, & of course, a 2 per customer maximum at Tiki bars all over the country.
Unfortunately, however, these drinks are true classics, & if there’s one thing our Halloween festivities need to truly be unique, it’s a grotesque abomination not unlike the ones roaming the streets outside. Perhaps the most famous abomination in history is Frankenstein’s Monster: a ghastly corpse reanimated by a bolt of lightning & the careful hands of its master.
For our Halloween cocktail, we’ll be reanimating this corpse with a bolt of bitterness.
The Frankenstein’s Monster – a twisted amalgam of a Zombie & a Jungle Bird – two classic tiki drinks that, respectively, can melt your brain with a nuanced balance of sweet, tart, & a helluvalotta rum, & another that can zap some life into any corpse with a heavy pour of the oh-so-bitter Campari, mellowed by the only thing that can stand up to it – dark overproof rum (& some pineapple juice).
The result is a funky, sweet, spicy, & bitter concoction that will turn the head of any cocktail nerd without forgetting to be a hauntingly easy sipper.
The Frankenstein’s Monster opens up with spice, & then as it warms, bracing tartness & rounded sweetness explode, giving way to a mellow but distinctive Jamaican funk & bitter herb.
This recipe comes to us from Leandro DiMonriva, head bartender at Cole’s French Dip in Hollywood & host of the Educated Barfly on YouTube. It’s perfect for a punch bowl – simply multiply the quantities by the expected number of drinkers.
The Frankenstein’s Monster
½ oz – Lime Juice
½ oz – Grapefruit Juice
½ oz – Cinnamon Syrup*
¼ oz – Maraschino Liqueur
¼ oz – Allspice Dram*
1 oz – Pineapple Juice
½ oz – Dark Overproof Rum*
1 ½ oz – Jamaican Pot Still Rum*
¾ oz – Campari (optionally floated)
Combine all ingredients (except Campari optionally) in a shaker tin. Fill with only 1-2 fl oz of crushed ice & shake vigorously until you can hear foam but not ice. Fine stain into a glass to remove pulp, fill with crushed ice, then garnish with spooky face & a bloody float of Campari.
For a punch, combine ingredients in a blender & blend without ice to aerate & combine. Deposit in a bowl with 1 large block of ice or several large chunks. Have crushed ice nearby for serving.
Garnish – Here, we did a cut out circle of grapefruit peel with a mouth to house the straw & 2 maraschino cherries on picks for eyes, with dripping syrup. A float of Campari completes the look & the taste. Grapefruit oils offer a pleasant aroma.
Dark Overproof Rum – Hamilton 151 , Lemon Hart 151, or Plantation OFTD
Jamaican Pot Still Rum – Smith & Cross, Dr. Bird, Hamilton Jamaica Pot Still, or Plantation Xaymaca
*Cinnamon Syrup – 2:1 simple syrup, with 3-5 cinnamon sticks simmered until the sugar is fully combined. Let sticks steep for 12 hours, then strain & bottle (or bottle & let them steep forever – it won’t hurt). The syrup lasts for several weeks, at least.
*Allspice Dram – Rum based liqueur (or non-alcoholic syrup) made to incorporate a bouquet of baking spice flavors (most prominently allspice) into any cocktail (almost always tiki cocktails). It can be homemade, but honestly, find yourself a bottle of St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram – it’s of the utmost quality & since pours almost always measure under a half an ounce, it’ll last forever.